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The Highly Sensitive Person's Guide to Starting a Self-Care Routine





Self-care is like giving your mind, body, and soul a big hug - it's crucial for your well-being in this crazy, non-HSP world!



This guide is your trusty sidekick to help you create a self-care routine that you can do (and not feel guilty at the same time!)




HERE ARE SOME TIPS FOR CREATING A SELF-CARE ROUTINE:




CRAFT YOUR ME-TIME PLAN

Starting a self-care journey might feel overwhelming or indulgent but it doesn't have to. Write out a "ideal week" calendar. Try and determine where you have 5-10 minutes that you can start devoting to increasing your wellness.





SCHEDULE IT

Actually put self-care on your calendar and make it non-negotiable. Write your gym time or massage appointment on the calendar in advance and schedule around it. Treat it like you would a doctor's or dentist appointment.





BE REALISTIC

Don't set yourself up for failure. If you go from not having an exercise routine to suddenly committing to running three miles a day, chances are you probably won't sustain that.



woman running in marathon.




MAKE YOUR GOALS SMALL AND ATTAINABLE

There is no harm in setting goals that are too small because the worse that can happen is you surpass them. Not a bad consequence in my opinion.





TRY THE 3-MINUTE RULE

When we want to start a new habit, often we set the goals for what we want it to be long term. Meaning we decide we are going to meditate for twenty minutes a day, seven days a week.


That's super admirable and more power to you if you can because I sure haven't been able to keep up that pace.



Instead, try for just three minutes per day. If you want to stop after three minutes, no problem you met your goal. If you feel moved to keep chanting, go for it. Look at it as a bonus!





KNOW YOURSELF

Spot where you can sprinkle tiny bits self-care magic in your life.


  • Order a side of steamed broccoli instead of the fries next time you go out to eat.


  • Try belly breathing whenever you are stopped at traffic light.


  • Don't keep snacks at your desk so you are required to get up every now an then to take a break and a brief walk down the hall.




stalk of raw broccoli.




S-L-E-E-P

Please, please, please get AT LEAST 7-9 hours of sleep each night for a solid self-care foundation.





PLAY

Create a list of activities that you find interesting, whether it's learning to play the guitar, getting your hands dirty in the garden, or painting with water colors.


My personal favorite is coloring mandalas using colored pencils.


Need more ideas? Click here for a list of 100+ suggestions of fun activities to try.





PHONE-FREE ZONE

Take mini digital detoxes- even if it is just for an hour or two.


Put your phone in the other room or at least turn off the notifications and turn it over so you can't see all of the notifications and blinking lights.





TREAT YOUR BODY RIGHT

Indulge in massages. They are not only relaxing but they also offer medical benefits as well.


(If finances are tight, see if there is a local beauty academy or massage school near you. I know where I live there is a school that does $25 student massages. Needless to say, I am a regular!)


If massages aren't your thing, unwind in a bath Soaking in Epsom salts can really sooth tense muscles and soaking in a tub just feels so luxurious.




woman getting head massage




CONNECT

Schedule time with your people, the ones who really get you. Whether it's a virtual hangout or an in-person catch-up over coffee, connection rally is the antidote to isolation.





BE FLEXIBLE

Tweak your self-care routine as life shifts; it's all about making it work for you. Change is inevitable so readjust as your schedule or life demands change.






REALIZE EVERYTHING COUNTS

Progress is cumulative so don't give up if you miss a few days or even a few weeks.


  • A 5-minute walk is better than no walk.

  • Drinking just one glass of water per day instead of soda is better than drinking no water per day.

  • Meditating for 45-seconds is better than being constantly stimulated.



woman meditating.




BE CONSISTENT

Consistency is the secret sauce to self-care success. Start small, build up your self-care routine, and watch the magic happen. Here's how to sprinkle self-care goodness into your daily grind:



Morning Boost

Kick off your day with a healthy smoothie, a mini meditation or breathwork (remember even 2-3 minutes counts), or a short stretch session.




Lunchtime Bliss

Use your lunch break for a self-care power-up - take a walk outside, read a few pages of a good book, or sneak in a quick nap.




Evening Chill

Wind down with a relaxing bath, a skincare pamper session, or a guided meditation. Be sure to turn off all overhead lights and dim the lamps as it gets closer to bedtime.




Remember, self-care isn't selfish, it's self preservation. It's a non-negotiable. Put yourself first, start small, and keep at it until it becomes second nature.








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